OVERLY LONG FILE NAMES - as impediment to COPYING FILES

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.customize (More info?)

I tend to use long file names, so as to identify needed files readily.

If the file saves to my C drive in Windows XP Professional,
I don't pay particular attention to the length of the file name
that I've used.

But in trying to COPY large files (e.g., a folder holding tens
of thousands of sub-folders, with 2GB of saved data), most
copying programs that I've encountered -- on 250 GB Maxtor
external hard drives, on 40 GB HP external hard drives,
on 2 GB Lexar flash drives -- not only will NOT COPY
a file with an overly-long file name, but they also TERMINATE
THE ENTIRE COPYING PROCESS INSTANTLY, merely on
hitting a single too-long file name.

Going into huge saved data files MANUALLY and MANUALLY
reducing the length of each long file name is impossible.

That's why we have COMPUTERS AND PROGRAMS:
to automate important but tedious tasks and processes.

I am hoping that someone somewhere has
AN AUTOMATIC FILENAME-LENGTH TRUNCATION PROGRAM,
or subroutine -- that could be run through my entire C drive
prior to attempting to copy large files, or, even better,
that could be run ON-THE-FLY in conjunction with any
file-copying process, and that could truncate overly-long
file names on-the-fly, as they are encountered, to permit the
standard file-copying routines or algorithms to proceed
without stopping, and even without losing those particular files
with overlong names.

IS THERE SUCH A FILENAME-LENGTH TRUNCATION PROGRAM?

If so, how can I get an operational version, both for XP Professional
and for XP Media Center?

I'd have thought that this sub-routine would have been the most
obvious thing in the world for MICROSOFT itself to have
incorporated into Windows.

But if it's available in Windows XP Professional or in XP Media Center,
I'm not aware of it.
1 answer Last reply
More about overly long file names impediment copying files
  1. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.customize (More info?)

    My answer at the bottom of this message.

    EverymanEndUser wrote:
    > I tend to use long file names, so as to identify needed files readily.
    >
    > If the file saves to my C drive in Windows XP Professional,
    > I don't pay particular attention to the length of the file name
    > that I've used.
    >
    > But in trying to COPY large files (e.g., a folder holding tens
    > of thousands of sub-folders, with 2GB of saved data), most
    > copying programs that I've encountered -- on 250 GB Maxtor
    > external hard drives, on 40 GB HP external hard drives,
    > on 2 GB Lexar flash drives -- not only will NOT COPY
    > a file with an overly-long file name, but they also TERMINATE
    > THE ENTIRE COPYING PROCESS INSTANTLY, merely on
    > hitting a single too-long file name.
    >
    > Going into huge saved data files MANUALLY and MANUALLY
    > reducing the length of each long file name is impossible.
    >
    > That's why we have COMPUTERS AND PROGRAMS:
    > to automate important but tedious tasks and processes.
    >
    > I am hoping that someone somewhere has
    > AN AUTOMATIC FILENAME-LENGTH TRUNCATION PROGRAM,
    > or subroutine -- that could be run through my entire C drive
    > prior to attempting to copy large files, or, even better,
    > that could be run ON-THE-FLY in conjunction with any
    > file-copying process, and that could truncate overly-long
    > file names on-the-fly, as they are encountered, to permit the
    > standard file-copying routines or algorithms to proceed
    > without stopping, and even without losing those particular files
    > with overlong names.
    >
    > IS THERE SUCH A FILENAME-LENGTH TRUNCATION PROGRAM?
    >
    > If so, how can I get an operational version, both for XP Professional
    > and for XP Media Center?
    >
    > I'd have thought that this sub-routine would have been the most
    > obvious thing in the world for MICROSOFT itself to have
    > incorporated into Windows.
    >
    > But if it's available in Windows XP Professional or in XP Media Center,
    > I'm not aware of it.

    I had to deal with such a situation when managing very large document
    data bases (>10Gb of storage in 500K files for each data base).
    My solution was a mixture of substs and a home made copy program that
    would take care of it all. Should be also possible using a script.

    Actually Windows does not impose any limits on the length of the
    "physical" path of a file, the limit is applied only when you try to use
    the path ;-)
    By using subst to dynamically assign a drive letter as I went down the
    tree I shortened the effective file paths to stay within the limit. The
    subst actually substed both the source and the target to keep both
    within the limit.
    The subst could be done on each directory level but I optimized the
    program to change the substs only when a file in the current copying
    directory exceeded the limit. I never measured the real benefit of the
    optimization but it was fun to do :-)

    Eduardo
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